It was a tough and well-traveled road for Weili Zhang, but she eventually made it to Las Vegas, Nevada, where she will defend her Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) women's Strawweight title for the first time against Joanna Jedrzejczyk at UFC 248 on March 7, 2020.
Indeed, not even the coronavirus (Covid-19), which has infected well over 80,000 people in mainland China, could prevent “Magnum” from making her way stateside to take part in one of the biggest fights of her mixed martial arts (MMA) career.
Before then, let’s take a trip down Memory Lane to the night Zhang made history, becoming UFC’s first-ever first Chinese-born champion. Back in Aug. 2019, Zhang found herself staring down newly-crowned champion, Jessica Andrade, at UFC Fight Night 157 in Shenzhen, China.
The action got started early, with both ladies determined to let the fight play out on the feet. But just 30 seconds into the bout, Zhang clipped an overly-aggressive Andrade on the chin with a straight right hand that rocked her. From there, “Magnum” continued the onslaught of knees to the body and elbows to the side of the head.
After breaking apart from Zhang’s grip, a retreating Andrade couldn’t escape her stalking foe, as Weili once again clipped “Bate Estaca” with a right hand that dropped her. Two blows later, and Zhang was crowned the new 115-pound champion. Now, “Magnum” will look to prove her win was far from a fluke by taking out the former long-time champion in “Sin City.”
UFC 248 — streaming on ESPN+ pay-per-view (PPV) this weekend — is set to be headlined by a Middleweight title fight as division champion, Israel Adesanya, takes on Yoel Romero.
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 248 fight card, starting with the Fight Pass/ESPN+ “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard balance on ESPN at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+.
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